Exposing ‘The Secret’

By Carla Coburn

If you haven’t heard by now, the new buzz around the country is The Secret written by Rhonda Byrne. With her recent appearance on Oprah, The Secret has become an overnight success ranking #2 on the Best Seller list under Harry Potter and ranking #1 on the “How-To Advice” book list. It has been stated that this could be the fastest-selling book of its kind in the history of publishing with over 2 million copies sold in its first four months on the market. So who is buying this “self-help” book and why is it so intriguing? The answer may be shocking to you.

While it is no surprise that mainstream has grasped this book openly, it is startling to see the vast number of Christians who are flocking to its teachings. I have heard of Secret parties being held by people who profess Christ. I have even heard comments that The Secret is based on Godly principles. Then there is the ever growing statement, “Oprah said it and she’s a Christian.” (but that’s another article for a later time) Well believers, The Secret is nowhere near the truth of God’s Word.

As we all know, the enemy is always looking for ways to distract people from the Truth. So there is no surprise that The Secret, The Lost Tomb of Jesus Christ, and the 666 Tattoo wearing Pastor were all introduced during the Season of Lent. All of these teachings were meant to take away from who Christ is and what He did to save the world. The Body of Christ must stay vigilant and not be swayed by everything that is presented as “truth.”
Some would say it’s easy for Christians to fall for the things that are outlined in The Secret. But is it really that easy to fall for these lies? I would say that a believer who does not know the Word of God enough to make wise decisions can be led astray by these teachings and many others. The Secret is filled with Christian vernacular which is what attracts many believers to the book/DVD. 2 Corinthians 11:14 says, “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.” His method of operation is to package his venom in something familiar so that even the elect will bite.

The Secret really is no secret at all. It is the long-standing, New Age “Law of Attraction” that was defined and promoted by William Walker Atkinson in 1906. Atkinson was the publisher of the book, “Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World” and editor of the “New Thought” magazine. Simply defined, the Law of Attraction is “like attracts like.” It follows the age-old sayings, “birds of a feather flock together” and it mocks the biblical principle, “you reap what you sow.”

The Law of Attraction is based on thoughts, or “the power of positive thinking.” Secret teachers have been quoted as saying, “what you think is what you get no matter good or bad.” This thought process alone makes it difficult to understand how 9-11, Hurricane Katrina and the recent Virginia Tech Massacre happened. Certainly the victims of these tragedies did not think these tragic events into existence. That would be ridiculous. Let’s use some common sense and become critical thinkers when we are hearing the sales pitch of a doctrine. There are things that we will never know or explain in our lives, but the reality is that we are in a world that is influenced by the spiritual realm, both good and evil. I would like Secret-ers to explain what a molested child may have been thinking to bring forth that result?

Is it wrong to think positively? Of course not. In fact, Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” So it is fair to say that God wants us to think on the positive things in life. But let’s dig deeper, because to take this one scripture at face value can cause you to fall for a lie

One way that “Secret-ers” achieve their goals is by reinforcing positive thinking through watching video clips repeatedly so that the images become imbedded thoughts in the mind. “The Secret to Money” is a free three-minute video with brilliantly mastered graphics and inspiring music in the background. I would expect no less from Rhonda Byrne, who is also a media producer who knows how to market and attract the mind. The clip opens with a panoramic night shot of a city with breathtaking views. I imagine this scene is similar to what Satan showed Jesus. Matthew 4:8-10 states, “the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.” In an indirect way, The Secret promises the viewer that they can have anything they want, if they just follow the principles.

Affirming statements such as, “Everything I touch turns to gold,” and “No matter what it is, no matter how impossible, I believe… I know… it’s mine” are sprinkled throughout the video. These statements are truly motivating for people to pursue their dreams. However, how does it translate to a person who desires something that belongs to someone else? The video clip itself seemed to promote “obsession and possession” to the point of “by any means necessary.” If you watch what’s going on in our society today, you will find many instances of people who are obsessed with passions that become perverted and lead to destructive behavior such as stealing, cheating, lying and even murder, and they all have this “by any means necessary” mentality. In other words, they want it so badly, they MAKE it happen.

The charge to watch the videos repeatedly is also disturbing; however, it is a key tactic that is used in many false doctrines. To watch something over and over will convince the mind to accept the information as truth. This is a subtle method of hypnosis.

The conscious mind is the gatekeeper that assists in decision making and it helps rationalize right and wrong based on our belief system. On the other hand, the subconscious mind believes everything that is presented to it.

When we watch something or say something repeatedly, we shut off the conscious mind (become zombies) and we open the subconscious to receive everything it is given. This is why people meditate and do yoga – they are shutting off their conscious mind. When hypnotized or bewitched, you become a slave to the enemy and will do whatever at his will. Romans 6:16 says, “Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?” To follow the directions of The Secret in hopes of finding happiness is a dangerous path to take, because you could clearly be walking into bondage with a subtle and crafty enemy.

At the end of the “Money” clip, a large genie appears through a billow of smoke from a lamp, much like the familiar Aladdin. The genie says, “Your wish is my command.” Everyone would love to have a servant who would do whatever they ask, but this is fantasy and everything we need or desire can be given to us by God.

Remember the scripture: “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”

When is the Body of Christ going to begin to believe God at His Word? He hasn’t stated these truths and promises for us to throw them away or doubt Him. Where is our faith? We have faith enough to believe God for heaven, but we don’t have enough to allow Him to guide us every step of the way in our lives? Instead, we look for the quick fix in products like The Secret.

Initially, this was disappointing to discover that believers had fallen for these lies. Then God reminded me that He has a remnant that He is looking for and this is yet one more way to reveal those who will trust Him all the way to the end. I Timothy 4:1 says, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.” The Secret’s teachings are seducing the weak minded and those who will NOT study God’s Word.

Many of us in the Body of Christ lack knowledge and/or we do nothing with the knowledge that we do have. Isaiah 5:12-13 says, “they do not regard the work of the Lord, nor consider the operation of His hands (speaking of those who do not want to trust God). Therefore my people have gone into captivity, Because they have no knowledge…” We become captives when we don’t know what the Word of God says. You’ve heard the saying, “what you don’t know won’t hurt you”? Well, that is a lie! God says what you don’t know will cause you to be a slave to the enemy.

The bottom line: God holds everything that we could ever want or need and His “secret” is simple: “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” [Matthew 6:33] Instead of jumping on The Secret bandwagon, why not search the Word of God and find out who you are. You don’t need a video to affirm you; God says you are fearfully and wonderfully made by Him. Why not search God’s principles for prosperity in every area of your life, rather than looking for gimmicks to attract money and whatever else feeds the flesh? In order to be a part of God’s remnant, you have to trust Him for everything. Will you study God’s Word and apply it to your life? Or, will you chase “The Secret” instead?

Research was done on The Official Website of The Secret at Carla Coburn is a Deaconness at New Beginnings Cathedral of Worship and is a Minister-in-Training at the Cathedral School of Ministry.

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